Teagasc 'can't compete on starting salaries' but one-third of staff earn €60,000 or more
Teagasc has warned that it cannot compete with the private sector for staff due to low starting-level salaries, while its annual report shows that more than one third of permanent staff earn €60,000 or more.
Professor Gerry Boyle said a starting salary of €31,000 was "uncompetitive" for those who have spent at least four years studying for a PhD.
"Like the rest of the public sector when the pay restrictions were introduced it has created certain rigidities and inflexibilities around starting salaries," he said.
Teagasc has 1,200 permanent employees and figures in its annual report show that more than 400 earn over €60,000 a year, while 24 of that cohort are earning more than €100,000.
It also said that the retiree base of 1,700 people continues to cost the organisation significantly.
The net pension liability was €1.23bn in 2016, up from €1.16bn in 2015. Professor Boyle said it was going to grow with people living longer into retirement.
It received €5.6m more in grant aid during 2016, while income for the Knowledge Transfer scheme increased by €6.6m.
Advice was provided to 42,115 farmers, while over 12,300 took part in discussion groups and more than 24,000 took part in training courses.